What Does a Business Coach Do?
Running a business can feel lonely. The buck stops at the top, and every decision rests on your shoulders. It’s inappropriate to ask your subordinates for advice or support, so who are you supposed to turn to when you need guidance?
An experienced mentor is perhaps the most valuable resource available to business owners. Hiring a business coach can help CEOs get the personalized guidance they need to make the difficult choices necessary to create a successful company.
What is a business coach?
Business coaches are typically expert entrepreneurs or executives who know how to grow successful businesses. They share that experience to help other business owners reach their goals.
Hiring a business coach is like having a highly experienced partner in your corner. They provide personalized advice that can help you navigate the rough terrain of running a business. That may include things like defining goals, crafting strategies for growth, or devising a plan for reviving a struggling brand.
What does a coach do?
A business coach helps business owners clarify the vision of their business and how it fits in with their personal goals. This allows the owner to understand the impact that reaching those goals will have on their life. If a business objective is not linked to the owner’s plans and aspirations, they are unlikely to passionately pursue it or, therefore, ever achieve it.
After clarifying the business owner’s vision, a business coach will assist in prioritizing the various goals. They can help owners see which items are just tasks and which are long-term objectives. From there, they may work together to determine which strategies will create the desired results.
Busy executives are so close to their businesses that they may fail to see the forest for the trees. As an outside observer, a business coach can more objectively see a company’s internal and external issues. They can help an owner better understand what may need to change, and can guide owners in craft an actionable plan to create desired results.
The coach will also lead the client in creating key performance indicators (KPIs), or metrics by which you can measure success. KPIs allow a coach to track their client’s progress, which is something a business owner might avoid if they are on their own.
Accountability is a critical component of business coaching. A business coach typically meets with a client regularly, either weekly or monthly, to check in on commitments made during previous coaching sessions.
Again, a coach isn’t a consultant who will do the work for you. Instead, they will keep you focused on the end result and remind you why it’s important. They’ll motivate you to keep your commitments, act as a sounding board, and hold up a mirror to help you see your personal and professional blind spots.
Why Hire a Coach?
Do you feel something’s keeping your company from reaching its full potential? If so, it may be time for a business coach. Here are three telltale signs you would benefit from coaching:
You frequently wish you could delegate things to someone, but you’re not sure who.
You think you need to grow your team but aren’t sure who to add. Another sales rep? A marketing manager? A system support specialist? You constantly feel shorthanded, yet can’t pinpoint what position is missing.
Perhaps the answer isn’t more staff. Maybe your retail manager is better suited to outside sales, but neither of you can see it. Or your accounting employee would be more productive in customer service, but no one’s picked up on it yet.
A business coach offer perspective to objectively evaluate your needs. Correct staffing will not only alleviate the feeling that you can’t delegate the way you want to, but it will also cut costs a well-placed employee is more productive, happy, and profitable.
You regularly think, “If I just had the answer to this question, I’d be more successful.”
No one can be a master of everything. Even if they could, no one has time to do it all. The successful companies aren’t the ones with the most individual brains, management guru Peter Drucker says, but those that have the most brains acting in concert.
Can you execute a marketing plan without breaking a sweat, but lack the knowledge to draft the plan itself? Are you excellent at hiring great employees, but terrible at writing help-wanted ads that attack top-notch resumes? Not sure where you excel and where your skills are lacking?
A business coach won’t coddle you. They will dig and help you recognize your strengths and weaknesses so you can shore up skills, outsource tasks, and focus on your best attributes to turn your business into a well-oiled machine.
You believe your company could do more and be better, but you’re not sure how.
No one builds a business empire alone. No matter how talented or experienced Sir Richard Branson or Meg Whitman are, they needed help creating Virgin Airlines and eBay, respectively.
Even the smartest business minds can benefit from a business coach. They bring different ideas to the table, offer a different perspective, possess a different skill set and outlook. With a coach in their corner, leaders like Branson and Whitman can push beyond their own limitations.
Business coaches have seen it all. Learning from the mistakes (and successes) of others through your coach’s experience, you can save yourself time, energy, and headaches. That allows you to stop sweating the small stuff and instead focus and what really matters.